Class of 2022 forward Darren Buchanan says George Washington working the hardest | Zagsblog
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Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
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Sunday / September 20.
  • Class of 2022 forward Darren Buchanan says George Washington working the hardest

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    By JACOB POLACHECK

    Darren Buchanan, the 6-foot-7, 228-pound small forward from Woodrow Wilson (D.C.) High School, says that George Washington is recruiting him the hardest.

    “They’re recruiting me the hardest, I would say right now,” Buchanan said in a phone interview Wednesday. “I talk to the coaches every day, often.”

    Buchanan, the 6-foot-5, 190-pound shooting guard from Woodrow Wilson (D.C.) High School, broke down his thoughts on the Colonials:

    They were just saying that they would like for me to stay home because they’re literally 15 minutes away from my house,” he said. “Coach [Jamion] Christian texts me every day just to check up on me, ask me how my day is. They’re recruiting me very hard. They’re just very big on me staying home, how I would fit their program and what they’re trying to accomplish.”

    He has taken multiple unofficial visits to George Washington.

    I’ve been to George Washington a few times. I went to some of their games and went to talk to coach Christian a few times,” he said. “I’ve been on George Washington’s campus a lot because it’s pretty close.”

    He broke down what has stood out on his visits:

    “The atmosphere in the arena and how intense coach Christian was into the game. It looked like he was playing himself. He was on the sideline coaching. That’s what stood out to me the most and just how they get up and down the floor and how he focuses on defense a lot. That’s a big thing to me, defense.”

    In addition to George Washington, Buchanan also holds offers from Bryant, North Texas, Seton Hall, and Rhode Island.

    He broke down each school:

    Bryant: “That was my first ever offer. I have a strong relationship with their assistant coach, Chris Cole. He’s been recruiting me hard and has been on me since my ninth grade year. I have a close relationship with him. They were the first school to offer me so I just take that as a blessing. The relationship with the coaches there are very strong.”

    North Texas: “They offered me, I think that was my third offer. I have a great relationship with coach Jareem [Dowling] because he knows one of my high school coaches. He is always talking to me and I talk to him often, every other day. We always have good conversations about life and other things. It’s not always about basketball, so that’s good.”

    Seton Hall: “I’ve known coach Tony Skinn for a while because during my freshman year, he was recruiting Dimingus [Stevens] who committed there. He’s up there now and I’ve known him for quite some time. I’ve always had a good relationship with him and he’s well known in the DMV area, so I already knew a lot about him and his background. I’ve had great conversations with him.”

    Rhode Island: “I got in touch with [Kevin] Sutton up there. He coaches the Mitchell twins now. I went to school with them last year, so they told him a lot about me. He saw me play and then a few days later they offered me. It’s a great relationship with him too. I talk to him every now and then. He’s just really big on me coming up there. He’s trying to get all the DMV guys to go to Rhode Island. It’s been good.”

    Buchanan says he plans on taking an unofficial visit to North Texas in the fall if he’s able to.

    “I plan on taking a lot of visits, as many visits as I can just to get out and explore what these schools have to offer,” he said.

    Buchanan has also been receiving interest from Clemson, North Carolina Central, Rutgers, Akron, East Carolina, UNC Charlotte and VCU.

    He has recently had Zoom calls with coaches from Clemson and Rutgers.

    “I think they’re looking to offer me soon, but we’re seeing how it will all play out,” Buchanan said. “They’re showing a lot of interest.”

    Buchanan says he’s supposed to have Zoom calls with Rutgers and Clemson ‘soon’, but has no date set.

    As he prepares to enter his junior year, Buchanan says he’s hoping to have a Final 10 or 11 list by the end of his junior season.

    “I’m looking to commit sometime after my senior season,” he said.

    According to 247Sports.com, Buchanan is ranked as the No. 29 small forward and the No. 149 overall player in the Class of 2022.

    “I’m a very high tempo player. I like to get downhill, get to the rim,” he said. “In the mix of that, I really thrive on getting my teammates involved.

    “Sharing the ball is big for me. Me, being a big guard, I have a lot to give so I just like to get dowhill, create shots for my teammates and I thrive on defense. I’ll lock up the best scorer on the team. I’m a willing to win person. I hate losing, so whatever it takes to win, I’ll do it. I’m very coachable. I’m always listening to what coaches have to say and just soaking it all in.”

    This summer, Buchanan says he’s been working on his conditioning.

    “Getting stronger, physically and mentally, working on my ball handling, my jump shot, my defense and how to create space on offense,” he said. “I’m getting better all-around. I’ve been really working hard. I workout twice a day. I’ll do conditioning in the morning and then I’ll go in the gym, get shots up and work on my ball handling.”

    Off the court, Buchanan is like any other 16-year-old, playing video games with friends, drawing and listening to music.

    “I love listening to music. Sometimes I’ll just sit in my room and listen to music. I’m really laid back off the court,” he said. ” I’ve been listening to a lot of J Cole because I heard that he’s been trying to make the NBA.”

    Photo: Angelo Hernandez

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